Evapotranspiration of Cotton, Apocynum pictum, and Zyzyphus jujuba in the Tarim Basin, Xinjiang, China

DOI: 10.4236/jwarp.2015.713081   PDF   HTML   XML   2,183 Downloads   2,665 Views   Citations


Evapotranspiration is a crucial component of the water balance of ecosystems and landscapes, especially under arid climates. In the Tarim Basin, China, there is an increasing competition for water between irrigated agriculture, mainly cotton, and natural ecosystems, which results in periods of water shortage. Such water shortages also impact on cotton. Therefore, alternative crops have been searched for, which eventually withstand such periodical water shortages better than irrigated cotton, notably Zyzyphus jujuba and Apocynum pictum. The fruit tree Z. jujuba has been promoted from the previous decade onward in parts of the Tarim Basin. A. pictum is used as medicinal plant and in a small scale as fiber crop. A. pictum is a perennial herb, which is part of the natural riparian vegetation along the rivers of the Tarim Basin and which grows without irrigation. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to investigate the crop evapotranspiration (ETc) of those three plant species over the growing season. In this paper, the Penman-Monteith approach was employed. Daily means of stomatal resistance in June was 118 s/m, 222 s/m, and 927 s/m for cotton, A. pictum leafs, and Z. jujuba, respectively. In October, those daily mean stomatal resistance climbed to 885 s/m and 742 s/m for cotton and A. pictum leafs, respectively. ETc over the growing season was 514.7 mm for cotton, 217.2 mm for A. pictum, and 339 mm for Z. jujuba. The Kc value of Z. jujuba was in the range of other fruit trees. In this study cotton attained high yields compared to world average yields at a low ETc. This high water use efficiency was achieved through a shift from flood to drip irrigation, the utilization of plastic mulch, and breeding of cotton varieties.

Share and Cite:

Thevs, N. and Rouzi, A. (2015) Evapotranspiration of Cotton, Apocynum pictum, and Zyzyphus jujuba in the Tarim Basin, Xinjiang, China. Journal of Water Resource and Protection, 7, 1101-1109. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2015.713081.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] Chapagain, A.K., Hoekstra, A.Y., Savenje, H.H.G. and Gautam, R. (2006) The Water Footprint of Cotton Consumption: An Assessment of the Impact of Worldwide Consumption of Cotton Products on the Water Resources in the Cotton Producing Countries. Ecological Economics, 60, 186-203.
[2] Xinjiang Statistics Bureau (2011) Xinjiang Statistical Yearbook of 2010. China Statistics Press, Beijing.
[3] FAOSTAT (2014)
[4] USDA (2012) China—Peoples Republic of Cotton and Products Annual. GAIN Report Number: CH12031.
[5] Hoppe, T. (1992) Chinesische Agrarpolitik und Uygurische Agrarkultur im Widerstreit. Das sozio-kulturelle Umfeld von Bodenversalzungen und-alkalisierungen im nördlichen Tarim-Becken (Xinjiang). Institut für Asienkunde, Hamburg.
[6] Feike, T., Mamitimin, Y., Li, L., Abdusalih, N. and Doluschitz, R. (2015) Development of Agricultural land and Water Use and Its Driving Forces in the Aksu-Tarim Basin, P.R. China. Environmental Earth Science, 73, 517-531.
[7] Hofmann, S. (2006) Comparative Analysis of Uyghur and Han-Chinese Farm Management along the Middle Reaches of the Tarim River. In: Hoppe, T., Kleinschmit, B., Roberts, B., Thevs, N. and Halik, ü., Eds., Watershed and Floodplain Management along the Tarim River in China’s Arid Northwest, Shaker, Aachen, 359-371.
[8] Peng, H.Y., Thevs, N. and Ott, K. (2014) Water Distribution in the Perspectives of Stakeholders and Water Users in the Tarim River Catchment, Xinjiang, China. Journal of Water Resource and Protection, 6, 543-555.
[9] Thevs, N., Peng, H.Y., Rouzi, A., Zerbe, S. and Abdusalih, N. (2015) Water Allocation and Water Consumption of Irrigated Agriculture and Natural Vegetation in the Aksu-Tarim River Basin, Xinjiang, China. Journal of Arid Environments, 112, 87-97.
[10] Thevs, N., Zerbe, S., Kyosev, Y., Rouzi, A., Tang, B., Abdusalih, N. and Novitskiy, Z. (2012) Apocynumvenetum L. and Apocynumpictum Schrenk (Apocynaceae) as Multi-Functional and Multi-Service Plant Species in Central Asia: A Review on Biology, Ecology, and Utilization. Journal of Applied Botany and Food Quality, 85, 159-167.
[11] Chen, Y.N., Ziliacus, H., Li, W.H., Zhang, H.F. and Chen, Y.P. (2006) Ground-Water Level Affects Plant Species Diversity along the Lower Reaches of the Tarimriver, Western China. Journal of Arid Environments, 66, 231-246.
[12] Thevs, N., Zerbe, S., Peper, J. and Succow, M. (2008) Vegetation and Vegetation Dynamics in the Tarim River Flood-plain of Continental-Arid Xinjiang, NW China. Phytocoenologia, 38, 65-84.
[13] Smith, S.D., Devitt, D.A., Sala, A., Cleverly, J.R. and Busch, D.E. (1998) Water Relations of Riparian Plants from Warm Desert Regions. Wetlands, 18, 687-696.
[14] Allen, R.G., Pereira, L.S., Raes, D. and Smith, M. (1998) Crop Evapotranspiration—Guidelines for Computing Crop Water Requirements. FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper No. 56, FAO, Rome.
[15] Valipour, M. (2014) Application of New Mass Transfer Formulae for Computation of Evapotranspiration. Journal of Applied Water Engineering and Research, 2, 33-46.
[16] Valipour, M. (2014) Use of Average Data of 181 Synoptic Stations for Estimation of Reference Crop Evapotranspiration by Temperature-Based Methods. Water Resources Management, 28, 4237-4255.
[17] Doorenbos, J. and Pruitt, W.O. (1977) Crop Water Requirements. Irrigation and Drainage Paper No. 24, FAO, Rome.
[18] Doorenbos, J. and Kassam, A.H. (1979) Yield Response to Water. FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper No. 33, FAO, Rome.
[19] Wright, J.L. (1982) New Evapotranspiration Crop Coefficients. Journal of Irrigation and Drainage, 108, 57-74.
[20] Pruitt, W.O. (1986) Traditional Methods Evapotranspiration Research Priorities for the Next Decade. ASAE Paper No. 86-2629.
[21] Snyder, R.L., Lanini, B.J., Shaw, D.A. and Pruitt, W.O. (1989) Using Reference Evapotranspiration (ET0) and Crop Coefficients to Estimate Crop Evapotranspiration (ETc) for Agronomic Crops, Grasses, and Vegetable Crops. Cooperative Extension, Leaflet No. 21427, University of California, Berkeley.
[22] Zhou, S.Q., Wang, J., Liu, J.X., Yang, J.H., Xu, Y. and Li, J.H. (2012). Evapotranspiration of a Drip-Irrigated, Film-Mulched Cotton Field in Northern Xinjiang, China. Hydrological Processes, 26, 1169-1178.
[23] Cai, J.B., Liu, Y., Lei, T.W. and Pereira, L.S. (2007) Estimating Reference Evapotranspiration with the FAO Penman-Monteith Equation Using Daily Weather Forecast Messages. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 145, 22-35.
[24] Steduto, P., Hsiao, T.C., Fereres, E. and Raes, D. (2012) Crop Yield Response to Water. FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper No. 66, FAO, Rome.
[25] Rumbaur, C., Thevs, N., Disse, M., Ahlheim, M., Brieden, A., Cyffka, B., Duettmann, D., Feike, T., Frör, O., Gärtner, P., Halik, ü., Hinnenthal, M., Keilholz, P., Kleinschmid, B., Krysanova, V., Kuba, M., Mader, S., Menz, C., Othmanli, H., Pelz, S., Schroeder, M., Siew, T.F., Stender, V., Stahr, K., Thomas, F.M., Welp, M., Wortmann, M., Zhao, X., Chen, X., Jiang, T., Luo, J., Yimit, H., Yu, R.D., Zhang, X.M. and Zhao, C.Y. (2015) Sustainable Management of River Oases along the Tarim River (SuMaRiO) in Northwest China under Conditions of Climate Change. Earth System Dynamics, 6, 83-107.
[26] Nechaeva, N.T. and Nikolaev, W.N. (1962) Pojasnitelnnyjtekst k kartepastbishravninnoj Turkmenii. Turkmenskij Nauchno-Issledovatelskij Institut Zhivotnovodstva I veterinarii, Ashgabat.
[27] Thevs, N., Ovezmuradov, K., Zanjani, L.V. and Zerbe, S. (2014) Water Consumption of Agriculture and Natural Ecosystems at the Amu Darya in Lebap Province, Turkmenistan. Environmental Earth Sciences, 73, 731-741.
[28] Thomas, F.M., Foetzki, A., Arndt, S.K., Bruelheide, H., Gries, D., Li, X.Y., Zeng, F.J., Zhang, X.M. and Runge, M. (2006) Water Use by Perennial Plants in the Transition Zone between River Oasis and Desert in NW China. Basic and Applied Ecology, 7, 253-367.

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.